Panasonic’s mini S1, the S5 is finally here. As the worst-kept launch secret of the year, about the only thing we didn’t know, was the price. It will be £1,799 for the body and £1,999 for the kit, including the 20-60mm Panasonic Lumix S. The price is right, and less than I suggested on August 20. Since the S 20-60mm costs over £600, paying the £200 the premium for the kit is the way to go.
The S5 is a fascinating camera for L-Mount fans, especially those who have cut their teeth on the Leica SL or Panasonic S1 and have acquired a few lenses.
Here is the launch video which, as you will see, spends a lot of time talking about video, although we can assume that the S5 is just as competent when it comes to still photography.
About the same size as its G9 micro four-thirds stablemate, the S5 is a significantly more compact platform for the gradually emerging list of smaller full-frame lenses. It will be a perfect companion for the little Sigma 45mm f/2.8, for instance, and will look and feel far more sprightly with M-mount manual lenses.
The new camera uses the same 24MP CMOS sensor found in the S1, with an ISO range of 100-51,200. It has a 1.85M dot fully articulating touchscreen while the electronic viewfinder sports 2.36M dots, quite a comedown from the huge units in the S1 and the Leica SL2. The camera features a smaller battery than the S1, the new DMW-BLK22 which is claimed to push up to 440 shots or as many as 470 if used only with the EVF.
Panasonic announced a new lightweight f/1.8 portrait lens to complement the smaller dimensions of the S5 and has promised three compact primes in 24, 35 and 50mm for launch in the near future. All are expected to offer the same f/1.8 maximum aperture, something that many L-Mount owners have been asking for. Some believe that too much emphasis has been placed on super-fast—and therefore super heavy—primes when most general photography is done at smaller apertures.
The rush to smaller full-frame mirrorless cameras has started. Sony is said to be ready to launch a new range of super-compact cameras which will be smaller than the A7 series and probably not much larger than the company’s APS-C models. Click here to read more.
While not quite as compact or as light as the Sony a7, the S5 is almost there and heads off the criticism that both Leica and Panasonic have attracted over the weight of their L-Mount cameras. With an aluminium body, the S5 is built to the same robust quality standards as the S1 and offers impressive dual image stabilisation, combining the IBIS with lens stabilisation where compatible. This gives an up to 6.5 stop advantage. The autofocus system is claimed to be much faster, with less focus hunt, particularly in low-light situations.
- More on the L-Mount Alliance
- More on Leica cameras and lenses
- More on Panasonic cameras and lenses
- More on Sigma cameras and lenses
Click the button below to view the Macfilos L-Mount Lens database. We will be updating it soon with details of the lenses announced today by Panasonic.
Chris Nichols: “The camera Panasonic really needed right now…”
New Hybrid Full-Frame Mirrorless Camera, the LUMIX S5
Featuring Exceptional Image Quality in High Sensitivity Photo/Video And Stunning Mobility
Panasonic is delighted to announce the new LUMIX S5, a new hybrid full-frame mirrorless camera that achieves both excellent performance in photo/video and stunning mobility for serious photographers and videographers.
At the heart of the camera, the LUMIX S5 contains a 24.2-megapixel 35mm full-frame CMOS sensor that boasts a wide dynamic range and high sensitivity performance. The LUMIX S5 further realises recording maximum ISO 51,200 crystal-clear high sensitivity video with the adoption of the Dual Native ISO technology.
As a pioneer of photo/video hybrid mirrorless cameras, LUMIX has the largest lineup of cameras that record 4K 10-bit video1. As the latest member of the family, the LUMIX S5 is capable of 4K 60p/50p4:2:0 10-bit, and 4K 30p/25p 4:2:2 10-bit internal recording. It is also capable of 4K 60p/50p 4:2:2 10-bit HDMI output. For 4K 30p 4:2:0 8-bit internal recording, there is no time limit. Panasonic’s exceptional heat dispersion technology delivers stable, long-time video recording. The LUMIX S5 provides 14+ stops of dynamic range, which is as wide as those of cinema cameras, and V-Log / V-Gamut compatibility with popular colorimetry called “VariCam Look.” A variety of recording formats and modes including 4:3 Anamorphic mode, Slow & Quick Motion, 4K/60p interval shooting and 4K HDR are also provided.
The LUMIX S5 boasts high-speed, high-precision AF (Auto Focus) in both photo shooting and video recording that are made possible with advanced deep-learning technology featuring real-time detection of the subject’s type and features such as human eye, face, head and body.
Combining the Body I.S. (5-axis) in the camera and the O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabiliser, 2-axis) in the LUMIX S Series lens, the 5-axis Dual I.S.2 prevents blurred images with the use of a 6.5-stop2 slower shutter speed. The splash/dust-resistant rugged design provides professional photographers with high reliability.
To enhance the photographic experience, the 96-megapixel High Resolution Mode (JPEG/RAW), Live View Composite function and HLG Photo mode are available.
Thanks to the high energy efficiency and a new 2,200 mAh high-capacity battery, it can capture approximately 470 pictures (using the LVF) / 1,500 pictures (in Power Save LVF mode). Power and charging are possible via the USB-C port. Double SD Card slot (UHS-IIx1 and UHS-I x1), 5GHz/2.4GHz Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2 connectivity are also supported. The LUMIX S Series full-frame mirrorless camera system adopts the L-Mount system to provide users with a diverse and future-proof range of products from Panasonic, Leica Camera and Sigma. Panasonic now offers four innovative models in the LUMIX S Series of full-frame Digital Single Lens Mirrorless cameras – the S1R, the S1, the S1H, and the new S5. The LUMIX S1R is ideal for taking high-resolution images, the LUMIX S1 is an advanced hybrid camera for high-quality photos and videos, and the LUMIX S1H is designed and developed specifically for film production. The LUMIX S5 packs the essence of these conventional S Series cameras in a compact, lightweight body. With this lineup, Panasonic is committed to meeting the demands of all creators by challenging the constant evolution of the photo/video culture in today’s new digital era.
1 Of mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras, as of September 2, 2020.
High image quality even in high sensitivity photo/video and Dual I.S. to suppress virtually any type of blurring
The LUMIX S5 contains a 24.2-megapixel 35mm full-frame CMOS sensor (35.6 mm x 23.8mm). The LUMIX S5 boasts a wide dynamic range and reproduces sharp images with exceptional clarity. Noise is minimised even when shot at maximum ISO 51,200 high sensitivity. It is an ideal camera to use especially in low-light situations.
The LUMIX S5 features Dual Native ISO sensitivity, the technology that was first introduced in the Panasonic professional cinema camera VariCam line-up. Normally, noise increases as sensitivity rises with a single native ISO image sensor. However, the image sensor with Dual Native ISO in the S5 minimises noise generation by choosing an optimal circuit to use according to the sensitivity before gain processing. As a result, it allows a maximum ISO 51,200 high sensitivity recording. Dual Native ISO gives film creators a greater variety of artistic choices as well as the ability to use less light on the set, saving time. The LUMIX S5’s Dual Native ISOs are 640 and 40001.
Taking full advantage of its high-resolution sensor, the LUMIX S5 provides a High Resolution mode that faithfully reproduces precise details to be saved as beautiful, highly realistic images not only RAW but also in JPEG. Eight consecutive images are automatically shot while shifting the sensor using the Body I.S. (Image Stabiliser) mechanism and synthesised into a 96-megapixel equivalent (12,000 x 8,000-pixel) image by the Venus Engine, which boasts high-speed signal processing. This high-resolution photo is ideal for landscape photography of stationary subjects or artwork with delicate details using a tripod. However, it can also be used in situations where moving subjects are included in the scene, by switching the sub mode.
The LUMIX S5 integrates the Body I.S. (Image Stabiliser) for powerful handshake correction. Panasonic developed an algorithm that precisely calculates shaky movements sensed by the gyro sensor, image sensor and accelerometer sensor. This enables more accurate shake detection and compensation, making it possible to use a 5-stop slower shutter speed2. Combining the Body I.S. (5-axis) in the camera and the O.I.S. (Optical Image Stabiliser, 2-axis) in the LUMIX S Series lens, the 5-axis Dual I.S. 2 the correction power is maximised to allow 6.5-stop slower shutter speed3. It is highly beneficial in telephoto shots and in adverse situations, such as in low-light or with one-handed shooting. The 5-axis Dual I.S. 2 works for both photo and video recording, including 4K. The Body I.S. compensates for camera movement even when other L-Mount lenses without O.I.S. are used.
With the new Live View Composite function, the camera releases the shutter at designated intervals of exposure time and synthesises the parts with high luminosity to produce a single picture. While the total brightness of each consecutive image is accumulated in bulb shooting, only the target subject, the bright parts of an image, are detected and the user can synthesise them carefully while seeing it in live view. This is useful for capturing shots of fireworks or stars in the night sky where the background needs no gain-increase.
1 When recording mode is set to V-Log. The sensitivity varies depending on the recording mode.
2 Based on the CIPA standard Yaw/Pitch direction: focusing distance f=60mm when S-R2060 is used.
3 Based on the CIPA standard Yaw/Pitch direction: focusing distance f=200mm when S-E70200 is used
Exceptional video recording performance for cinema-quality film creation
As a pioneer of photo/video hybrid mirrorless cameras, LUMIX has the largest lineup1 of cameras that record 4K 10-bit video. As the latest member of the family, the LUMIX S5 is capable of 4K 60p 4:2:0 10-bit, and 4K 30p 4:2:2 10-bit internal recording up to 30 minutes. It is also capable of 4K 60p4:2:2 10-bit HDMI output. For 4K 30p 4:2:0 8-bit internal recording, there is no time limit. It will comply with RAW video output to ATOMOS NINJA V over HDMI as well as C4K video recording with the future firmware update (which will be detailed in Chapter 6).
Dynamic range measures the luminance range that a digital camera can capture. The LUMIX S5 delivers 14+ stops of Dynamic Range, which are virtually the same as those of the Panasonic cinema cameras, to precisely reproduce everything from dark to bright areas. The ability to capture accurate colours and rich skin tones is a must for any filmmaker. The LUMIX S5 imports the renowned colorimetry of the VariCam lineup of cinema cameras. The LUMIX S5 contains V-Log/V-Gamut capture to deliver a high dynamic range and broad colours. V-Log renders a very flat image while maintaining all of the colour information within the image. This means that there is a greater level of play when the images are put through post-production processes. The CMOS sensor of the LUMIX S5 achieves a wide colour gamut known as V-Gamut, which is the S5’s optimum colour space and achieves a colour space that is wider than BT.2020. V-Log has log curve characteristics that are somewhat reminiscent of negative film and V-Gamut delivers a colour space even larger than film. 35 conversion LUTs for VariCam cinema cameras can be downloaded free of charge for use in the LUMIX S5. It is easy to match the colour tone with the footage recorded in V-Log of S1H/S1 and V-Log L of GH5/GH5S. Practical tools like a Waveform Monitor and V-Log View Assist are also available.
With Slow & Quick mode, impressive video slow and quick motion video in 4K(1-60fps, 30x quick to 2.5x slow) or in FHD (1-180fps, 60x quick to 7.5x slow) is available. It is possible to use AF2 to capture the subject in sharp focus in this mode, too. It can also be accessed directly using the mode dial.
The HDR (High Dynamic Range) video recording in 4K is also available, which reproduces both the bright parts and dark parts of an image, making it appear as if seen in person. The camera records video with a designated gamma curve compatible with ITU-R BT.2100, and the user can now choose Hybrid Log Gamma (HLG) in Photo Style. The HLG3 Photo mode provides a wider dynamic range to reproduce light and shadow with more natural contrast. The HLG Photos can also be produced as an HSP file4 with compressed high-brightness signals in its full resolution (5,888 x 3,312, in 16:9) in addition to JPEG/RAW files. The user can playback these vibrant images on the latest Panasonic HLG-compliant 4KTV via HDMI cable connection or other HLG-compliant devices.
For more continuous burst shooting, 6K PHOTO5 makes it possible to capture unmissable moments at 30 fps by extracting the frame with the best timing out of a 6K burst file (in 4:3 or 3:2 aspect ratio) to save as an approximate 18-megapixel equivalent high-resolution photo.
1 Of mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras, as of September 2, 2020
2 The AF mode switches to MF when the frame rate is set to of 150 fps or more. The angle of view is reduced when the frame rate is set to 180 fps. Recording stops when the continuous recording time exceeds 30 minutes.
3 “HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma)” is an international standard (ITU-R BT.2100) HDR format.
4 “HSP” is an HDR picture format using HLG format video technology.
5 6K PHOTO’ is a high speed burst shooting function that cuts a still image out of a 4:3 or 3:2 video footage with approx.18-megapixel (approx. 6000 x 3000 effective pixel count) that the 6K image manages.
High-speed, high-precision AF achieved supported by real-time detection technology
The LUMIX S5 boasts high-speed, high-precision AF in both photo shooting and video recording. Combining the Contrast AF with DFD (Depth From Defocus) technology, it focuses on the target in approximately 0.08 sec1. As a camera that excels in low-light shooting, the LUMIX S5 boasts -6EV2 luminance detection performance with Low Light AF thanks to the higher sensitivity and optimised tuning of the sensor. Allowing maximum 480 fps communication speed between the sensor and the lens, users can take full advantage of this high-speed, high-precision AF when LUMIX S Series lens is used.
The LUMIX S5 also incorporates an advanced deep learning technology that detects specific subjects like humans and fast-moving animals. Notably for humans, the head is separately recognised from the eye, face and body by real-time detection technology to provide even more precise focusing. The camera continually tracks an individual even if they move quickly, turn their back to the camera, tilt their head or move far away from the camera. On the other hand, improvements to the DFD technology has enhanced AFC, which also enables users to keep tracking small or fast-moving subjects to capture them in crisp focus.
1 11EV, at wide-end with S-R24105 (CIPA) in LVF120 fps setting.
2 At ISO100, F1.4, AFS
Reliable basic performance and expandability for creative freedom
The LUMIX S5 boasts outstanding mobility yet excels in basic performance and expandability. To withstand heavy field use, the LUMIX S5 is composed of a magnesium alloy full die-cast body and is splash/dust-resistant1. With an optimum layout of heat dispersion components, heat is effectively transferred outside which results in stable, continuous video recording for a long time.
The LUMIX S5 has a large LVF (Live View Finder) with a high magnification ratio of approx. 0.74x. High-precision, high-speed OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode) display features 2,360K-dot high resolution. Adoption of OLED for the LVF achieves high speed response with minimum time lag of less than 0.005 sec. With an eye-point of approximately 20 mm, it offers high visibility with comfort for users wearing glasses.
A 3.0-inch free-angle LCD in 3:2 aspect with 1,840K-dot high resolution provides touch control. Composition during recording in various popular aspect ratios such as 16:9, 4:3, 1:1, 4:5, 5:4 and 9:16 can be checked with the Frame Marker function. The REC Frame Indicator identifies whether the camera is recording or not.
The LUMIX S5 has a double SD Memory Card slot. One slot complies with UHS-I and the other with the high-speed, high-capacity UHS-II (Video Class 90). The camera’s battery can be recharged either via AC or USB according to the user’s convenience.
Compatibility with Bluetooth 4.2 (called BLE: Bluetooth Low Energy) enables constant connection with a smartphone/tablet with minimum power consumption. The settings of a LUMIX S5 camera can also be copied and transmitted wirelessly to other S5 cameras when using multiple S5 cameras. Wi-Fi 5-GHz (IEEE802.11ac) 2 also is effective in addition to 2.4-GHz (IEEE802.11b/g/n.) This provides secure and stable connection on location for smooth remote control and high-speed data transfer.
1 Dust and Splash Resistant does not guarantee that damage will not occur if this lens is subjected to direct contact with dust and water.
2 5GHz Wi-Fi is not available in some countries.
Optional accessories and application software
A variety of accessories can be used for the LUMIX S5 to enhance its usability and convenience. Microphone Adaptor (DMW-XLR1) is a plug-in type adaptor for an XLR microphone to record high-quality stereo sound. It is ideal for lip-sync recording. Dedicated switches allow direct, quick control. MIC, LINE and CONDENSER MICROPHONES are switchable. Battery Grip (DMW-BGS5) allows approximately 940 pictures (using the LVF) / 3000 pictures (in Power Save LVF mode) with an extra battery inside the grip. More accessories such as Remote Shutter (DMW-RS2), DC coupler (DMW-DCC17), Tripod Grip (DMW-SHGR1) are available.
Application software LUMIX Tether enables tethered shooting via USB. Users can control the camera by connecting it to a PC via USB. It lets them view the image on a large PC screen while shooting. For live streaming, LUMIX Tether for Streaming (Beta) with LIVE VIEW mode can be used.
The LUMIX Sync application for iOS/Android devices enables photo transmission to a smartphone or a tablet via easy wireless connection. It also allows remote control of the camera using these devices.
Future Firmware Update
To further enhance its performance, a firmware update is scheduled for the LUMIX S5 by the end of 2020. In addition to C4K video recording, it will support RAW video data output to ATOMOS NINJA V over HDMI at a resolution of 5.9K (5888×3312) 29.97p/25p, 4K(4128×2176) 59.94p/50p and Anamorphic 3.5K (3536×2656)/50p. A variety of video recording assist functions such as the Vector Scope Display, Master Pedestal Adjustment and SS/Gain Operation(SEC/ISO, ANGLE/ISO, SEC/dB) will also be available. L.MonochromeS and L.ClassicNeo are the new options to be added for Photo Style.
Panasonic Lumix DC-S5 specifications
MSRP £1,799 (body only), £1,999 (w/20-60mm lens), including UK Value Added Tax at 20%
Body type SLR-style mirrorless
Body material Magnesium alloy
Max resolution 6000 x 4000
Image ratio w:h 1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9
Effective pixels 24 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 25 megapixels
Sensor size Full frame (35.6 x 23.8 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Color space sRGB, Adobe RGB
Color filter array Primary color filter
ISO Auto, 100-51200 (expands to 50-204800)
Boosted ISO (minimum) 50
Boosted ISO (maximum) 204800
White balance presets 5
Custom white balance Yes (4 slots)
Image stabilisation Sensor-shift
Image stabilisation notes 5-axis Dual IS 2
CIPA image stabilisation rating 6.5 stop(s)
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Fine, standard
JPEG (Exif v2.31)
Raw (Panasonic RW2, 12-bit)
Optics & Focus
Contrast Detect (sensor)
Autofocus assist lamp Yes
Manual focus Yes
Number of focus points 225
Focal length multiplier 1×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Fully articulated
Screen size 3″
Screen dots 1,840,000
Touch screen Yes
Screen type TFT LCD
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type Electronic
Viewfinder coverage 100%
Viewfinder magnification 0.74×
Viewfinder resolution 2,360,000
Minimum shutter speed 60 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/8000 sec
Built-in flash No
External flash Yes (via hot shoe)
Flash modes Auto, Auto/Red-eye Reduction, Forced On, Forced On/Red-eye Reduction, Slow Sync, Slow Syn./Red-eye Reduction, Forced Off
Flash X sync speed 1/250 sec
Continuous drive 7.0 fps
Exposure compensation ±5 (at 1/3 EV steps)
AE Bracketing ±3 (3, 5, 7 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV steps)
Format MPEG-4, H.264, H.265
3840 x 2160 @ 60p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.265, Linear PCM
3840 x 2160 @ 50p / 200 Mbps, MOV, H.265, Linear PCM
3840 x 2160 @ 30p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.265, Linear PCM
3840 x 2160 @ 25p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.265, Linear PCM
3840 x 2160 @ 23.98p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.265, Linear PCM
3328 x 2496 @ 30p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
3328 x 2496 @ 23.98p / 150 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
1920 x 1080 @ 60p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
1920 x 1080 @ 50p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
1920 x 1080 @ 30p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
1920 x 1080 @ 25p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
1920 x 1080 @ 23.98p / 100 Mbps, MOV, H.264, Linear PCM
Storage types Dual SD/SDHC/SDXC slots (UHS-II supported in slot 1)
USB USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 GBit/sec)
USB charging Yes (Power Delivery supported)
HDMI Yes (micro HDMI)
Microphone port Yes
Headphone port Yes
Wireless notes 802.11ac (dual-band) + Bluetooth
Remote control Yes (wired or via smartphone)
Environmentally sealed Yes
Battery Battery Pack
Battery description DMW-BLK22 lithium-ion battery and charger
Battery Life (CIPA) 440
Weight (inc. batteries) 714 g (1.57 lb / 25.19 oz)
Dimensions 133 x 97 x 82 mm (5.24 x 3.82 x 3.23″)
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording Yes